IUSF to launch countrywide protests from today

Published : 8:57 am  February 15, 2017 | No comments so far |  | 


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By Kalathma Jayawardhane   
The Inter University Students’ Federation (IUSF) said yesterday the six-month suspension on the admission of students to SAITM would not make any difference and vowed to launch countrywide protests from today. 

DM_20170215_A001-7IUSF Convener Lahiru Weerasekara told a media briefing that they could not agree with the proposal made by the Deans of the eight State Medical Faculties and Higher Education Minister Lakshman Kiriella to suspend admissions to the South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) until the completion of the periodic review of its medical degree programme.  

“The suspension will not make any difference because SAITM does not enrol students on a monthly basis. Admissions usually take place once or twice a year and this year’s enrollments may have been completed by now,” he said.  

Mr. Weerasekara said the government was attempting to fool the Deans while supporting SAITM Chairman Neville Fernando to continue with his activities to privatise education.  

He said the graduates were expected to undergo clinical training in a State hospital and pass a licensing examination conducted by the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC).  

“We oppose these proposals and will continue our struggle to safeguard free education.  SAITM should be abolished immediately. 
Our fight is not against standards  but against the privatisation of free education,” Mr. Weerasekara said and added that today’s protest campaign would be launched from Kandy, Galle, Ratnapura, Anuradhapura and Kuliyapitiya.